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tv   Today in Washington  CSPAN  October 25, 2010 10:00am-12:00pm EDT

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of afghan society. we are looking for a way to accommodate them in a fashion that the rest of afghanistan can accept. why are the coalition forces fighting in afghanistan? they're fighting because fundamentally the afghan government and people do not believe that the taliban is ready to provide the rest of afghanistan with the rights to go to school. practicing their religion as they want. to just to engage with their neighbors and with that their fellow afghans. i am talking about bringing the taliban to the table with a clear understanding that at the end of the negotiations, not just the taliban, i think that the popular support for the taliban as measured by the government -- which is difficult
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to measure, is up to 10%. a population of around 30 million is still a lot of people. nonetheless very small in overall terms. so, why this lack of public support? talking about those terrible things that were happening before there were thrown out, the amputations and the stonings are barbaric. not a way for any civilized people to live. that is the sense from the taliban. we will go on fighting until you are ready to talk about not doing it, living in a proper and civilized way. host: we are out of time. thank you for talking to our viewers this morning. guest: thank you. host: richard barrett joins us from new york this morning as a part of the taliban and al qaeda un monitoring team. thank you for watching us on
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"washington journal." we will be back tomorrow at 7:00 a.m. with your phone calls. have a good day. ♪ [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] .
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we continue our debate coverage with debates from the minnesota governors' debate and a pair of house races. one of the great features of the c-span and video library is the ability to share programs with your friends. during the campaign season, that includes more than 100 debates that have aired on c-span. search, find, and share videos from the c-span video library. now a panel discussion on the midterm elections. among the speakers, ms. cheney, daughter of dick cheney. from fairfield university in
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connecticut, this is one hour, 45 minutes. >> thank you and welcome for coming. for those of you up there, you are welcome to come down and get a better seat. come down before we start the event. feel free to come down. your relatives in san diego
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will be able to see you. thanks to the good folks from c- span. let's hear a welcome for c-span. [applause] would not begram possible, of course, without the absolutely marvelous assistance and support of our office of student affairs, a whole group of people working with our students, too many people to thank. how many freshmen are here? let's hear it from the freshman. [applause] it does not matter whether you are 19, 69, 79 -- it doesn't matter. we are here at this town hall meeting.
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i am the moderator for the open visions forum. we are genuinely thrilled to have this collaboration tonight. it is hard to believe this is the fifth annual students forum. a student of american history once observed -- he said, our political institutions work very well. they are designed to climb against each other, and that noise is called democracy at work. exploring, questioning, learning to critically analyze these issues because there will be lots of noise tonight. what is the noise about? i think you know the issues. jobs, health care, immigration,
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the crisis in education, and of course, international topics. two ongoing wars. conflicts in iraq, africa, the perennial question of the palestinians and israel. 20 months ago, we heard about change we can believe in, and now it seems based on the latest poll, 59% of the voters say that the nation is moving in the wrong direction. 49% of the voters who were polled recently within the last 48 hours have said that they do not really believe any more the yes we can, change we can believe in slogans. 49% are unhappy with the direction the country is going in. so there is a lot up for grabs.
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we have a populist tea party flexing its muscles. in the coming two weeks, we are going to see 45 house seats, perhaps seven senate seats in a midterm shift in what could be epic proportions. of course, in connecticut, all of you are aware about the local elections. of course, we are all deeply involved in all of it. the important thing, of course, is to vote. we have two special guests tonight, ms. cheney, dee dee myers. they will both speak to us for about 10 minutes giving us their overview, framing what they consider the major topics and
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issues in the midterm elections. we have already had a coin toss and ms. cheney will be the first supeto speak. after their fall more marks, we will go to the student panel for a round robin of questions that should last a half hour. then the final half hour we will be taking questions from the audience. we will ask you to come down and ask your question. we would ask that your questions are short and concise. without any further ado, let me introduce the president of the fairfield student association, a wonderful young man from bridgeport, connecticut, president of the students' association, mr. eddie munez.
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he will be bringing out the student panel. [applause] >> thank you, everyone, once again for attending the open visions forum. i am very excited to participate in tonight's event. we are the student branch collaborating with the open visions for rum and we are delighted to be here. the open visions forum is in its 14th season and the meaning of the forum is to be the student center program that engages the student body on a variety of issues that we face, domestically, locally, and internationally. tonight we have a list cheney, the daughter of richard cheney, former deputy assistant for the secretary, dee dee myers,
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political commentator and vote -- contributed to "vanity fair." the team is global citizenship and tonight is a perfect platform to learn about how to be global citizens. now i would like to introduce the three-student panelists. first we have steve, who is a senior, majoring in communications and politics. he is involved with student media. we also have sarah hogan, a junior majoring in art history. she is involved in college democrats. we also have met morrissey who is a sophomore majoring in politics. [applause] now i would but to introduce to night's speakers. ms. cheney -- liz cheney.
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[applause] >> it is nice to see you. and ms. dee myers -- t d byers --dee dee myers. [applause] >> thank you. we are going to sit down and make ourselves comfortable. based on the coin toss, liz cheney will be speaking to us first. >> is wonderful to be here. wonderful to see so many people interested in what will clearly be an important election. it is also nice to be here just a couple of weeks before halloween. i always like to see what the more popular holocaust tombs are this year. this year is clear that all of
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the republicans are dressing up like sarah palin. the democrats are dressing up like republicans. [laughter] but there is a reason why. i want to touch on four reasons why i think this election will be more than just about throwing the incumbents out and why this will be more about something that will bring drastic and fundamental change to the nation. the first reason is although you have republicans in washington who the democrats and the white house like to say are the party of no, that we are obstructionists. that is not really true. if you look at what has happened in washington, you have to say that president obama has gotten things done. that is not his problem. his problem is that the american people are deeply concerned about the things that he has gotten done. whether it is the health care reform bill, stimulus, a financial sector reform, people across the country are concerned
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about the impacts of these policies are having on their lives. at the same time, i believe they have lost trust and faith in the president. you can look at two examples of why. health care. the president traveled the country from coast to coast telling us that he would bring the cost curve down. telling us that he could cover more americans and it would cost less, and we could keep our policies if we liked them and quality of health care would go up. we have already seen what is the result of his plan. we have seen his political cronies, frankly, people in the teachers' union, are exempt from his plan. we have seen businesses like mcdonald's and boeing saying that it will cause the cost of health care to go up for them. but i do not have to tell you what will happen here in connecticut. they may have to raise premiums
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by 47% because of the rule that says there can no longer be any lifetime limits on coverage. so the american people are very concerned about the impact of these policies, and the way the president told them to us. the second thing is the stimulus plan. the president traveled the country and said it would feature shovel-ready jobs and keep the unemployment rate at 8%. we have an unemployment rate, according to gallup, at 10% now, and we are hearing now that there is no such thing as a shovel-ready project. the second reason the president has a problem, the reason it will have a negative impact on his party, is he has lost touch with the american people. all of us watched him, mesmerized at times, by his communication skills.
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this is a man who now has adopted a policy that i cannot understand, and maybe dee dee can explain it to us, we will see. it is attacking the american voter. just last weekend, when he was trying to explain why his policies do not have the support that he would like it to have, he said backs and science are not carrying the day now. it is not doing so because we are not hard wired to think about that when we are scared. that is pretty amazing. 21% of the people of in the country say that they are satisfied with the direction the country is going in. so you have a vast majority of people who are scared about these policies, and the president tells us that is because we are not thinking clearly. that is not a recipe for success at the polls. the third problem the president has got is his enthusiasm.
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if you look across the board at the numbers when pollsters measure who is more likely to go to the polls. in 1994, when bagram took measures of enthusiasm, and in that election year member the republicans took the house and senate. republicans have an enthusiasm advantage of only six points at the highest level according to that poll. this year, according to the same poll, republicans enjoy a 20 -- 12-point advantage. according to a "wall street journal" bowl, it is closer to 20. the reason for this in dos ism capp -- a -- enthusiasm gap -- every year you hear about the future of our grandchildren. that is usually true, but this year you are hearing something different. this year you are hearing people
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across the country say that this election is about the future of the nation. the kind of future we are going to live in. will we be in a nation that continues down this path of massive spending, tax increases, government expansion, a path that takes us to a european, socialist democratic model, or are we going to turn things around? are we going to turn to a common-sense set of principles with less government and a strong belief in the private sector? those voters out there who are so concerned about these policies, who have watched while the president added $3 trillion to the national debt, who watched wylie lost 3 million dog -- jobs since the stimulus plan, those voters are enthusiastic and will go to the polls. at the same time, the president's supporters are less than enthusiastic about what they have seen for a variety of
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reasons. the last reason i think this will be such a transformational election for us in this country is two kinds of races you do not hear about. governor races and state legislation races. once the election night is over, republicans could have 33 governorships and we are in place to win over 400 seats in state legislatures, which will give us 12 to 15 state legislatures. that will be important because of redistricting, the census, of how the map will be drowned in the future. it is also important because those governors matter. they are the republican leaders of the future. a lot of those races where the governor's houses are up and republicans are likely able to make a game, are in battleground states. so you have a situation if republicans are successful in that state, if the governor's
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promise what they are promising to do, if they are affected stewards of the state and are fiscally responsible, then you will have a situation in 2012 where president obama has to go into states where he has to carry in order to win the election and he will be forced to say to the voters, look at my record -- which unless he turns things around is pretty abysmal -- and the voters can compare that to that of a republican governor. people who actually are putting the brakes on. i think there are a major reason why this election matters much more than just a traditional vote the incumbent-out of the election. when the president and his party have tried to impose radical change on the american people, change the american people do not want, and when they refuse to listen to the american people when they say stop, they are bound to lose at the polls.
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in my eyes, they deserve to. [applause] >> that was great republican stuff. i asked her to speak for 10 minutes and it was exact. dee dee, you are on. >> it is great to be here. thank you for having us. as i was getting ready to speak to you all, i was reminded of a story of one of my favorite washington characters, rush limbaugh. [laughter] it seems that he was visiting washington not long ago jogging along the potomac river. he is a fitness buff. [laughter] he was going along and came up on three girls riding their bikes. they recognized him and he was flattered that they recognized him. somehow he got distracted and slipped and fell into the river.
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the girls saw the whole thing and they pulled him from the river and he was so grateful. he said, what can i do, i am so grateful? one of the girls looked at him and said, i know this is a tall order, but you are a powerful man. i would like to be buried at arlington national cemetery. he said, why are you thinking about where you want to be buried? >she said, when i get home and tell my mom who i just saved -- [laughter] [applause] i was going to tell the joke about dick cheney. the first time i told the joke it was about bill clinton. [laughter] it is great to be here. i am a product of the jesuits
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university, santa clara university. that was a transformative experience for me. it was the desolate education that set me on this right or wrong path of progressive politics. a santa clara used to describe itself as framing the academic work and community into the question of greater values. not sending kids off to wall street but asking kids what is our greater obligation to the community? i see that here in the mission statement of fairfield. i cannot tell you how important i think that is. always happy to be here. i find that whenever i go to colleges, students ask about how you got to where you are now. i got out of college, my parents are both republicans. my mother has just seen the
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light and is now a democrat. my father was thrilled that i chose a catholic in diversity. i came out a reaching liberal and he was horrified. i spent how much and this is what i got? anyway, ronald reagan was running for reelection. i decided he did not deserve a second term, so i voted for -- went to work for walter mondale. i thought that we were going to win right up until the end. we lost 49 states. [laughter] we got a 33 got -- we got a total of 13 electoral votes. i went from there to the mayoral office of los angeles. i went to work for micrococcus after that. [laughter] there is a theme here. that did not work very good so
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i worked for dianne feinstein, who had done two successful terms for san francisco and was running for governor of california. obviously, with my help she lost. [laughter] since then, she has been elected to the u.s. said that without my help. it is pretty obvious then why bill clinton called me in the fall of 1991. who would not want me on their team at that point? at that point, governor clinton was not given much chance to win but i liked what he was saying. he was talking about things that i thought democrats needed to talk about. i agreed to work on his campaign. and probably, we won the democratic nomination and he was elected president and i became the white house press secretary. i always remind people that sometimes you have to fail before you succeed. as white house press secretary i
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got to travel or around the world, got to be a part of history in ways that i could never imagined. i will always be grateful to president clinton for giving me the opportunity to serve him and our nation. it changed my life. since then i do a number of different things, including two places -- including to coming to places like here to talk about what i do, i contribute to "vanity fair." i also did a bit of contribution for the show "west wing." i spent most of my time with the writers and i got to take a lot of the things that happen to me and change the ending. you do not get that opportunity much in life. anyway, here we are today. on the process of another -- i lived through the 1994 election, a big democratic wipe out. i do not think there is any other way to see what is going
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to happen other than a big democratic wipeout. this is something that i know about. i agree with some of the things that liz said but it will not shock you to know that i disagree with tom as well. certainly, i think democrats will lose the house. i do not know if it is 45 seats. that feels like a ballpark today. i do not know what it will be in a few weeks. i do not feel like we are going to lose the senate but there has not been a time since the direct election of senators, the beginning of the last century, that the house flipped without the senate going with it. there is a reason for that. it is possible democrats can lose the senate but i do not think it is possible. in the aftermath of that, the republicans are going to overreach, as both partners often do.
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it is important to keep in mind about this cycle, what is interesting to me about it, and this is the third big change election in three years. in 2006 we kicked out the republican congress. enough, we are unhappy with their performance. in 2008, we kicked out the republican president. we chased him out of town with a policy on his tail. he made barack obama look like pope john paul. now we are going to chase out the democratic congress. i think that raises a profound question. what is going on? this is not about the republican party wanting a republican congress. they're less popular than the democratic party. i did not think that was possible. this is not a call for restoration of republican policies. they are tired of democratic coalition ship but they do not
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know what they want in its place. republicans have not laid out an agenda. what are they going to do? they are going to cut spending. they have not identified a single program. let's not forget the last administration with a republican nearly doubled the federal debt. it went from around $5 trillion to around $10 trillion under president bush's time. that does not look like we are looking at an era of fiscal stability and belt-tightening. not discretionary spending went up every year in the bush administration. i do not think -- in 1994, when the public kicked the democrats out -- they had not seen a republican congress in 40 years. maybe there was some nostalgia. and ii think the republicans wil
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overreach, they will over enter their mandate, just as democrats have done. i think there will be a lot of disappointment. the economy will continue to struggle along. if republicans control at least one, both houses of congress, they will be vested, they will be part of the problem as well. they will have to own the economy, own this health care system, own the problems that the american people are frustrated by. by the way, in 2006, 2008 the country did not think the country was moving in the right direction either. i think the republicans will overreach, and as a result, it will be a couple of interesting wheels -- years. will the republicans helped to steer us in the right direction? will the president learned his lesson? will he showed some -- will he
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show some space here? we made some mistakes, i hear you, america. i do not know if you all read the "the new york times" piece last sunday. the president was saying how there were things that we did not understand what it was like to be here, how hard it was to get things done in washington. how we have to do more than just pass certain kinds of policies. we need to bring the american people along with us. that is something the president has not done as well as he needs to. will the republicans help to solve problems, will the president reached out and it knowledge errors, can the country move on? history suggests that president obama will be reelected. i am pretty confident. i know it seems odd, but if he
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can adjust -- he is a smart guy, he is a good politician. if he can make some adjustments and include the republicans, he has a good chance of being reelected. the other thing that makes me feel confident in that is as i look at the republican field of potential candidates -- they are not making a face on mount rushmore at this point. it is hard to beat someone with no one. i do not know if there is a candidate who has emerged that has captured the imagination of the republican primary base, let alone the country. those are my predictions. i heard a story recently that i think sums up the value of predictions. there was one guy who liked to bet on horses. he looked at the clock one morning and found it was 5:55 in
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the morning. he called a taxi, it was cardmember 555. it was also may 5. so he was feeling lucky and he went to the race. he waited for the fifth race and that $5,000 on the fifth course. damn it if that horse did not finish 5th. [laughter] [applause] >> thank you. 10 minutes 30 seconds. now we are going to have a round robin. each of the student panelists will have a question. then we will allow a rebuttal from the second guest. .et's begin with steve
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>> first question goes to ms. cheney. i wondered if we could talk about the tea party. there has been a lot of coverage. not so much now, but for thinking, in terms of 15 years in the future, do you think this is a blip on the political landscape -- the political mosaic -- or is it something that is much more long-lasting? >> it is an interesting phenomenon. i think it has been fascinating to watch, as a part of our democratic process. the extent to which you have many people, many of which have never been involved in politics before are suddenly taking to rallies, organizing, clearly going to be involved in gaza election. my sense is -- first of all, the
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tea party is many things. they are well organized but there is not one national leader. it will look different in 10 years, no question. 10 years is a millennium in politics. whether or not the tea parties themselves look like it does today, i think they will have a lasting impact on what the political parties look like. what dee dee was saying about the bush administration, i think it was true, particularly near the end. spending was out of control. we should have been more fiscally responsible. certainly what we are seeing now with the tea party is a desire for fiscal responsibility. in my view, that belief, that principle is something that has been more at home in the
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republican party. i think the republican party will need to make clear it believes in these fundamental principles. the other impact that will be very long lasting is that the people we elect now understand -- those who were elected this time understanding particular their job is to represent the people who put them in washington. there will be consequences if they do not do that. no more business as usual, which is not a republican or democratic desire at this point. no more business as usual. >> i do not see it as a long- term movement, per say, because
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there is no organized center. once you start to have candidates running -- maybe the tea party might splinter about who they believe best represents their principles. i think liz is right. impact on the political discourse will be greater. it reminds me a bit of the ross perot movement, where his campaign was a constitutional amendment to balance the budget. although he did get 19%, which is remarkable when you realize he was crazy -- [laughter] nevertheless, he may have changed the outcome of the election. he energized the public. that issue was allied not just in 1992 but was also part of what the republicans in office
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in 1994. the gingrich and organize the contract for america and this was part of his organized goals. clinton just kept on fighting against it and decided finally that he couldn't. the republicans want to balance the budget in 10 years, i am going to do it in seven. he realized that he could not win the question about whether or not to balance the budget. should there be more controlled spending in washington? i think that is something that most people feel is an important conversation to have. >> the next question is from sierra hogan. she is from pennsylvania. i also know her mother is in the audience. >> we mentioned about the teachers union.
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according to an article, ms. myers, do you believe the union still have much sway? >> the unions are still a powerful force. they still raise a lot of money in service of democratic candidates. they definitely do not have us but power as they once did. there are definitely races around the country where spending from labor unions will have a democratic candidate. this year, it has been totally swamped by third-party spending on the behalf of third-party candidates. crossroads, a crossroads gps -- liz has a better handle on what they are -- but these groups are spending on behalf of republican candidates without any disclosure. i think that is having a much bigger impact than labor money. >> i think dee dee is much more
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familiar with the unions then i am, but when it comes to this teachers union, it is becoming a bipartisan issue. it will be interesting to see how president obama and as education reform. it is clearly needed in the country. it is something that the teachers union has not been an advocate for the period to the extent that he would be willing to challenge them, challenge the people that helped to elect him in order to put in place the kind of education reforms he says he wants, will be an interesting political dynamic. >> the next question is from matt morris. your parents are also here tonight. go ahead. >> ms. cheney, as college students enter college for the first time, do you see the
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contentiousness of the races being a problem for their involvement in the future? >> i do not think so. i think there is always a part of politics and campaigning that drives people crazy. including when you're inside the campaign. i had a similar experience -- listening to dee dee talk about who she was going to work for. i decided to work with fred thompson and then he dropped out. then i worked for mitt romney. then he dropped out. at which point my sister asked me, could use please just sign on with barack obama? [laughter] i think at the end of the day we are so fortunate we live in a country where we can challenge
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those who are in charge and you can make your voice heard. if you decide you want to do that, that you want to make a contribution, that is one of the most noble things that you can do. everyone in the room can make a difference. particularly young people. you have so much enthusiasm and the future is before you. get in the trenches and fight. that is what you have the right to do it as an american. i hope everyone here who can does take advantage of that. >> let's go back to steve. >> this one is for ms. myers. given all that is happening with gay marriage, don't ask, don't tell, the recent coverage of children who are being bullied because of their sexual orientation, do you think this issue of gay rights, sexual orientation will be the major civil-rights struggle for the upcoming generation of college
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students? >> it is tragic what we have seen happen with these young people taking their lives because they have been delayed. i am sure there are kids who have taken similar drastic action for being bullied. in terms of gay rights being the sole rights issue of our day -- the reason that i hesitate -- i think it is just going to pass. i think young people do not care as much. there is still a fight on things -- it is a bit contradictory about what i thinsaid about kids being bulli- but you all know how tough it can be when you are 13, 14 years old. with young people, it is not as much of an issue anymore. it will not be an issue as people your age move into their
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20's, 30's, they will take their add to its with them. in the short term, don't ask, don't tell will be overturned. it will be wise for the president to see what the studies suggest. i think it is important that you see admiral mike mullen to stand up in front of the world and say that he had been serving with gay men and women since 1968 and they have every right to serve. i do not want to say that is the end -- [applause] but 20 years ago, nobody would have believed that the joint chiefs of staff would have said something like that. it is something that is so obvious -- you know, we are more than halfway there. >> i really agree with everything she said. nothing to add. >> ok, sarah. >> there are more it registered
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independents then there are democrats or republicans. nationally, this is a growing trend. do you see the development in the future of a third party because of this growing statistic? >> i do not. it is something that people talk about. talks about making changes within the republican party. i then they will. probably the19% is top of what an independent or third-party candidate could do in an election. i think our two party system works pretty well. i think you will expect -- continue to see that. the one thing that i think is interesting, sometimes people
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make the mistake of assuming independents are liberals. i know in the bush administration, many people would say you have to reach over to the independences. you have your base but you need to move to the liberals. i thing that is a mistake. independentss by definition are sort of independent. at the end of the day, they want to see the kind of responsibility that the tea party and others are calling for. at this point, it is more people identify themself as conservative than liberal. >> i think there is more interest in the third party. we have been 33 change cycles in a row. people think washington is dysfunctional, they do not like the two party system. one of my bugaboos is the way we
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gerrymander our congressional districts. you have liberals, democrats, conservative republicans not a word about being beat by someone in the middle but by someone from the left flank. it makes things polarized because of that. i think there is a growing frustration for a long time. 40% of people in connecticut are independent because they think either party does not really represent their views. i think independents are slightly more fiscally moderate and they do not really belong in either party. the problem is, it is extremely expensive to run as a third party. you have to get on about which requires getting signatures. you have to qualify. it is incredibly hard. that is the reason i do not think we will see a third-party
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candidate, unless we see somebody like mike bloomberg come into the race and sell funds. what is he worth? $30 billion? he has been very successful as the mayor of new york. he has a lot of credibility. i do not know if he is going to run, but he said he would not. he said, i am a short jewish guy from new york. i cannot win. but the people around him are not saying that. it is like a just add water presidential campaign. i think they sense that this could be a moment and he has the resources. >> on february 18 of this year was speaking at the political action congress, you said that fighting terrorism cannot be president obama's part-time job. what can the administration do better to protect the country from the threat of domestic terrorism? >> it is a critically important issue.
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you have been hearing a little bit -- you have been hearing the president's critics. look at what the president has done in terms of the war on terror and his approach to it. you get the sense that he sees it as a distraction. he came to office with a lot of ideas about fundamental transformations of america at home, and the fact that he has to spend time and resources on the war is something that he is distracted by, something he would rather not do. i think it is more than just an outside perception of him, and i do not usually reference bob woodward's books, but in the most recent book about the president, he makes clear that that's how the president feels. after that came out, the white house said that that was it. the problem was, the president has attempted to turn back the
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clock and has tried to treat the war on terror as if it were a law enforcement matter. talking about things like bringing khalid sheikh mohammed to new york to try in civilian court. looking at ways that we could go after these terrorists as criminals and to criminal investigations but in ways that would not keep the country safe. if you look at what he did just after he took office when he said he would investigate officials to participated in enhanced interrogation, where he would possibly sue the lawyers to carry out the policy, that sends a clear signal about his priorities. we now know, without question, that the enhanced interrogation program provided intelligence that kept the nation safe and save lives. you can argue about whether or not we can do the program, but based on those facts, you can argue that it saved lives.
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returning to a sense of understanding that we are at war, that fighting the war has got to be the commander in chief's top priority -- winning the war has to be his priority. one word about afghanistan. i think the president did the right thing when he sent 30,000 additional troops in. the problem is -- and it could be a fundamental flaw with his strategy. he said we are coming home in july 2011. after he said that, others in the administration made a big effort to say we do not mean that is a deadline, that is the beginning of a drawdown. the president has been pretty clear in his interviews, this is when we are coming home. the problem is, if you ask the generals who were in charge of the troop surge, what were the ingredients that made it effective, one of the important ones was that the iraqis, those that we were fighting with side
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by side, and the civilians, knew that we were staying with them. our enemy knew that we were not going to leave. but in afghanistan, you have the opposite. the enemy can bide his time and our allies have to make a judgment. every time we are asking them to conduct an operation with us, asking them to go into neighborhoods with us, they need to ask whether it is worth the risk and retribution once we are gone. another thing the president could do is make sure that we win the war. we cannot allow this place to become a safe haven again. >> obviously, it will be of no surprise that i agree -- disagree with much of what liz said about this. [applause] i think the president has kept both eyes on terrorism. the media does not cover much. quite frankly, the
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administration does not talk about everything there are doing, nor should they. certainly, the president had done things like -- there has been an increase in predator drone, an increase in the capture and kill of terrorist leaders. that is something that is important that the administration has not gotten much credit for. i think he has both eyes on it. one thing that we do not want to do in the fight on terrorism is inspire yet another generation of terrorists. i think we need to be careful about how we are perceived. we need to protect american bodies at the same time. [applause] one man's enhanced interrogation is another man's torture. [applause] i think that is a shameful episode in our history. [applause] and so do the john mccain's, colin powell's, others who have been on the receiving end of that type of interrogations.
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>> i have to say something here, sorry. it is one thing to make a charge like that, but i think that charges shameful. when you look at in an interrogation program, it is something that many americans went through in fear training. the exact techniques that were used to -- >> because they would be facing terrorists if they were captured. >> no. if you suggest that what we did was out of bounds, you have to say you are willing to except that we would have lost american lives rather than take steps beyond that -- >> you cannot say that. that is a logical leap. i respect your perspective on this, and i hope you will respect mine enough to allow me to finish. [applause]
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>> go ahead. then we will move on. >> we are a nation that has repudiated torture. we should continue to do so. you cannot convince me or anyone that has been waterboarding that it is not torture. we did water board some of our minute -- military personnel because we expected if they were captured, it would be helpful for them to know thawhat was in store for them. they knew they were not going to be killed by their fellow members of the military. that is severely different if you are captured. but as i said, as we move forward, it is important that we do not breed a whole new generation of terrorists. i think president obama has done that and will continue to do that. >> i believe what we can be true to our values, too, which we
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have done since 9/11. i think it is a cop out, with all due respect, in a university in connecticut, where we are all safe, and make a judgment about the enhanced interrogation program without accepting responsibility for the fact that had we only asked for an information we would not have been able to save those lives. [applause] >> let me just say one thing. you got the first crack at this, so i get to respond to your response. >> 30 seconds. >> i think my argument is totally fact-based from the beginning. now i have lost my train of thought. i think it is a false choice to say that we either torture or we ask them politely. these are not the things and i
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am recommending. people like john mccain, colin powell, and others who have fought hard against because they thought it was either not affective ticket information, or if it was not the best way to go about proceeding. >> obviously, we have a disagreement. we are going to move on. a disagreement on the use of torture. now we are going to go to the next round, a discussion on global and international topics. >> moving on to international issues. brian williams spoke here about three years ago. he said all the focus was on south korea, iraq, and afghanistan. he said, keep your eye on iran. and it blew up in terms of the
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coverage. ms. cheney, what country should we now be keeping our river on, should we be watching in terms of what will happen? >> i think iran is still critically important. it is clear that they are making every progress they can toward the acquisition of a nuclear weapon. what concerns me is the administration is taking steps that the united nations -- developing sanctions, packages of sanctions. if you survey the sanctions, i cannot find anyone on this side of the issue that will say sanction will be affected in stopping or slowing the program. nobody will say that. as a nation, we cannot allow iran to allow nuclear-weapons.
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but we are not taking a effective steps to actually stop that from happening. you have had a process now where the president came into office and said i would engage with president ahmadinejad. after he said that, you had the supreme leader in the iran call us the great satan. in the last week you have seen ahmadinejad in a grant for a run the middle east, including lebanon. his visit was clearly dangerous and provocative, and send a message. i have been to the middle east and number of times now. when you talk to people there, they are very concerned. it is not just israel's concern about iran. those in the gulf are concerned. they are concerned -- it is a little bit like the situation in
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afghanistan. if people cannot make a judgment about the united states' objective, what they're willing to do to carry out their policies, they start to look to other deals. if there is a situation where the u.s. rhetoric is no new nuclear weapons for iran but our action do not match that, -- and in fact, when the iranians were shooting their students in the street and the president cannot be bothered to say that that was bad -- it sends a clear message to people in the middle east that they have to cut some deals because they cannot count on us. it is a dangerous world when people believe they cannot count on us. i hope that we will begin to see more effective efforts to bring the program to a close. >> thank you. dee dee? >> i agree that iran the single
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most important country to keep an eye on, but i doubt the president is standing back and allowing iran to develop a nuclear weapon. i don't the he is prepared to go in with the defense of strike. we also need to keep an eye on the middle east. as long as the israel-palestine situation continues to fester -- there will be no solution without a more sustained engagement. it was lacking in the previous administration in all lot of ways. the middle east is an unstable place. part of what drives a ahmadinejad is the israel- palestinian situation continues. he knows he can exploit it. and i would add china, not as a military situation, but they are
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important economic rival. yesterday they devalued their currency and sent world markets into a frenzy. it is something we have to deal with. hasn't think either party covered itself in glory in this context. one side has all but demonized china without offering long-term solutions to deal with them effectively. >> a "new york times" article suggested most voters are not interested in the middle eastern politics. why do think the american public has become so uninvolved? this is four of ms. -- for ms. myers. >> in a time of nearly 10% unemployment, that trump's just about everything.
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the american elections are really about foreign-policy. we should argue american should be more involved and informed about global issues, but this one in particular, when you have an economy in crisis, and one that nearly went over the press of this exactly two years ago, people are still wary. if they're worried about putting food on the table, keeping their home, then they're less concerned about what ahmadinejad is doing, whether or not they should be. >> i do agree with that, but i think national security and foreign policy has gotten more attention this time then maybe it seems. yesterday in the debate in the pennsylvania sestak-toomey the issue of closing guantanamo and the bomber in new york -- those were hit very hard.
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issues that anger americans most such as trials in new york the white house has backed off on. i don't know if it is with until the auction houses, or because they want to try a new approach. we will see. but i think she is correct. today in front of every american person is the concern that people cannot find jobs, taxes will go up, not be able to pay for health care, and the president will not stop spending. i think it trounce concern over other things. >> and the recent times we have seen 114 nations lobbying against arizona. ms. myers before nations like mexico should chastise arizona for wanting to secure its borders -- >> do they have the right? of course, they get sick whenever they want as a sovereign nation. do we have to like it? no. but they have the right to weigh
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in on a. whether or not it is helpful to a party or candidate depends on circumstances. neither party has been effective in dealing with the tremendous immigration problem. president bush to his credit -- one of his greatest moments was when he tried to find a bipartisan immigration policy. it is a problem. the american public is fed up. it does affect other countries also. it will not drive our policy- making completely, but we must be aware of our policies affects on the rest of the world. mexico has the right to complain, even if arizona does not care. >> what surprised me was not the we had other countries complaining about arizona, but that this administration itself went to china, state department
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officials, and in the teens said we have our own human rights problem -- look at the arizona immigration law. that is wrong. you can say that you disagree with the policy, which i do not, but for u.s. official to go to china for the human rights record is abominable and hold that up arizona as an example of some kind of feeling on our part is beyond the pale. i think it stepped over the line. >> we will take a lot of questions. steve, ask a question. >> international aid is often characterized as an effective, neo imperial-listed, and damaging to countries that become dependent on. some suggest we take that and focus its internationally to eradicate poverty, homelessness, and to help schools. >> it is absolutely true in my experience as i spent a number of years working at aig, and
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then state departments working in the least, eastern europe, the soviet union -- it is a mess, and a big problem. it is for many reasons, including congressional earmarking of programs with no real measurement of effectiveness or success. in some countries because of treaties and earmarks, the size of the program is met regardless of the effectiveness. the challenge for some is just to get the money out of the door. it is a big mess. there are some things we do very well. we do disaster assistance very well. we need to look for ways to refocus our foreign aid in areas that focus on private sector development and growth, for example. some of the biggest wade in foreign aid program is from government to government. at stanford were you have our
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own government bureaucracy, but by one in a developing a rod, and you end up with few results. we need to apply basic common sense, measuring techniques. one area i'm very proud of in terms of foreign aid as well we did in the bush administration when i was involved in the empowerment of women. we really focused on the middle east. you cannot say any longer to less than having your women be treated as children is an internal affair. we were very direct and clear in saying the empowerment of your men is a national security and economic issue for us, and for you. we looked for programs to support to give women a voice in those countries. in my experience, it is such a
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big mess that it would take so much political capital to fix that no administration either republican or democrat ever wants to attempt it. there are other things to spend capital on. >> this is one area where there is a tremendous amount of agreement between us. foreign aid is important for many reasons. some programs are not affected, but one place we can do enough is in investing in women. there is no more efficient way to fuel economic development, political stability, peace, than to educate girls and invest in women. to the degree that our government can facilitate that and encourage the private sector to create opportunities to invest -- that is the most effective thing to do. hillary clinton, i applaud the work of liz and the bush administration in this area, and mrs. bush was an effective
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advocate, the state department has done a great job -- but no one has ever done more than hillary clinton. she made it a top priority for her state department. >> taking into account the global community is it ethically correct --[unintelligible] that presidents have the luxury to do one thing and not another. but in terms of addressing what is most on the minds of american people, affecting daily lives, yes, the president should spend most public time on the economy. he cannot stop dealing with afghanistan dealingiran, or stop worrying about terrorist camps in pakistan, or any other issues he is dealing with but in terms of his public time, it should mostly be focused on economic issues.
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>> i understood the question a little differently in terms of whether we should be thinking about the impact of what we do here having on the other countries. at the end of the day a strong, driving america is good for the globe. when you have an america facing economic downturn and crisis as we are now, people looking for american leadership and not knowing where we are, that makes the world more dangerous. it is very appropriate to be focused on how to get our own house in order here at home. >> meant that his question in, but after that we will go to the audience. please come down, there are two microphones, and start lining up. matt, your question? >> here at fairfield we have adopted the university initiative of global citizenship. what in your opinion are the key
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responsibilities of a global citizen in this day and age? >> as global citizens, we must understand that america is one country in the world. we have to be aware of the effects our decisions have on other countries. we also -- it is right, the world is better off when there is a strong america. economically, politically strong, spiritually strong -- it is imported for the world. with that we are obligated to have some humility. we do not have all the answers. we are not always are. things that work for us may not work for the rest of the world. sometimes the notion that no one can be critical -- i don't know
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concerning the story about china -- i don't think that is a pri. but we ought to be willing to examine our own behavior. it is part of our moral obligation. >> that is true, but in terms of global citizenship, we should not be arrogant, but should never be ashamed, embarrassed, or afraid to be willing to acknowledge and accept the tremendous freedoms we have in this nation. the people who have died for those freedoms. and to be clear about right and wrong. too often what happens -- i have experienced at the un or you walk in and really do think you have entered the twilight zone. you have suddenly got libya
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telling us our human rights policies are screwed up. you think, really? it is important for us not in the name of humility to lose sight of the truth. it is also important -- and it is another place where i don't know where dee dee stance on the issue, but president obama when you first arrived in office seemed more than just uncomfortable in international settings. he sat in mexico city with daniel ortega who stood up and delivered a hate-filled the spree of a venomous lies about america. you are president of the u.s. and this guy is delivering what is clearly crazy and untrue. decisionident made this is i to say i'm just glad that president ortega did not blame
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me for things that happen when i was 3 months old. that is very dangerous. he could have ignored it, fought back. he could have said this guy is crazy and i will respond. but he acknowledged it in a way that made everyone watching think wow, maybe there is some truth to it. if the president of america is doing that, not willing to stand up and say wait, we don't have all the answers, but we're the best nation in the world, and the best that ever existed. it was not be unclear about that. [applause] >> we will go to questions from the audience. can i ask you all to please be sure that your questions are short and to the point? let's try to get as many as possible. quickly. >> you talk about looking overseas. it is hard not to be struck by what is going on in france, a couple of months ago in degrees, and the u.k. is looking askance.
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perhaps they are dealing with the same as us, but a little more critical. >> we were talking about that on the train on the way up here today. we were amused that the french are striking over raising the retirement age from 60 to 62. greece is a cautionary tale. in nearly the world back into the second wave of depression. it is similar to what is happening in the u.k. -- david cameron is an interesting later. i'm not sure what the lessons are yet. the one thing, as david cameron is compared to gov. christie of new jersey -- the thing they have in common that i support is they're talking turkey to their people.
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telling them, we have to make hard choices. i don't agree with all the choices, but do agree with that approach. we're the country where every week you go to the treasury's door and there is a magazine saying that you can eat ice cream and lose weight. this country wants to have it all. we're not patient. sometimes we're not willing to do the hard work. our leaders do not ask us to sacrifice. the lesson from britain and perhaps from new jersey -- that we need to sacrifice and be all in it together. then people will respond. i would be thrown if republicans and democrats in congress and the administration took some of that, off that way. >> i would add two things. go to look at the imf recommendations for greece. i hope that the white house read
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them. when the imf went in they said you must do more to make this conducive for the private sector, to encourage growth and development, and you cannot have a health care system so expansive. when the white house is watching those images on television with rights in greece, and not signaling that there calibrating policies here at home, that is concerning. the second thing, the situation france faces today -- it is ridiculous that their reason retirement age two years and people are striking, but it is an entitlement issue. we have not effectively dealt with the issue here. democrats and republicans alike have not dealt with it. no one wants to talk about it two weeks before an election. but we will be in serious trouble if we don't find a way
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to deal with the fact we have significant numbers of baby boomers who will be near retirement age, look at the social security and medicaid systems -- those cannot be here for them. we cannot afford what we have had in the past. frankly, i hope we will see bipartisan action. >> yes, sir? >> in two years if the economy does not turn around and the republicans come up with a viable candidate, do you think there is any chance that the president will ask joe biden to step down, and bring in hillary clinton? [laughter] >> no, i do not. it is a great washington parlor game to talk about that. it is the kind of things we talk about instead of the atomic reform because it is fine and easier. i think that president obama is very grateful to vice president joe biden.
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he feels he has been a good partner to him. not only of public, but in providing advice. not that hillary clinton could not also, but i don't think that would work particularly well. i don't think people vote for vice-president said. they vote for presidents. the more interesting question is if obama is not reelected, it does hillary clinton run for president in late 2016? >> just as interesting as when bob gates leaves, will hillary clinton become secretary of defense? >> she is probably the top choice and is a likely outcome. the defense department is by a multiple of five bigger. it would be an interesting move for hillary clinton to move from state to defense. we will watch that one. gates has made it clear he will not stay forever.
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>> do you want to jump in there within a 2012 predictions? >> just a little twist that i think republicans are not likely to be in a situation where we have over-reached. because we do not have the white house. it is very hard -- >> who wrote the book on that? >> i think our problem will be a different one. if we do end up in control of the house and senate, or just the house, there will be a big expectation. people will say we elected you, now want to see healthcare repealed. now we want to see the bush tax cuts extended. the question will be whether or not the republican leadership in congress is able to make clear that they are doing all they possibly can towards those objectives, even in the face of what will facea veto was likely from president obama.
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the expectation of change in the midterm election is the time normally see in a presidential election. even if we have massive gains on election day, the republicans will not have the white house. it means you must be thinking about incremental change, and hopefully ways to work together to get things done. >> let me add that in 1994 new to gingrich and company came up with a contract for america with 10 items. each item was supported by specific pieces of legislation. all but two republicans in the entire congress signed on to the contract with america. it was a much more unified republican party. but now you have a leader john boehner putting forward something for america -- what was a call? a bunch of platitudes. they could not get their caucus to agree on specifics.
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if you have a unified party, then the president would face a different scenario. the fact that the party is united in opposition to nancy pelosi and president obama, but not an agenda -- >> it is more complicated than that. to say that they are not united in support of an agenda -- does not really how the system works. >> the contract for america was 10 very specific items supported by specific legislation. >> they are clearly unified around extending bush tax cuts, keeping taxes low, repealing the healthcare plan and replacing it was something. there is no sense we don't need health care reform, but that this one is dangerous.
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they are unified around getting control of those spending. i think the question will be whether or not the republicans are able to put in place a series of proposals that the president is therefore forced to either reject or accept. washington had that unfold. watching the extent -- president obama's reaction to this election will be crucial and fascinating. he has the ability to tell the american people, i hear you. i screwed some stuff up. i'm really skeptical he will. i don't think we have seen anything except in trying to read between the lines in the peter baker peace in "the new york times." not indicating that he wants to be anywhere but where he is, pretty far left on the
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ecological spectrum. >> josh, one of my best freshman ever -- identify yourself. >> i'm a sophomore politics major here. my question is, feeds off your last response -- the political climate seems to be becoming more polarized. do think it is unavoidable, or something we can change? it was part of a obama's platform, but with the healthcare and other it seems to have become exacerbated. do you deal it can be changed? or is it unavoidable? >> can be changed? not in the immediate term, no. because of some reasons i touched on, with three congressional districts that reward polarizing candidates. you don't to be challenged on your right flank if you are a conservative, so you run to the right. same thing on the left for democrats.
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the media rewards outrageousness and polarizing things said. and on a muddy contributes to the nastiness. we have gotten -- if you go and never write an opinion piece or read them on line, then go to the bottom for the comments? [laughter] just to check -- is it still as crazy as it was? it goes to the most outrageous ad hominem attacks on whoever is writing the article. all that contributes -- the polarization and harshness go beyond the specific political culture, making it even harder to heal. >> we will go to the next question. >> i'm richard, a junior here, history and politics double major with a minor and classical studies.
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it seems as if the attention span of americans has been decreasing substantially. it seems that people have forgotten about one of the greatest environmental disasters already -- the bp oil spill. there is less coverage been given to the mosque and ground zero. it be believe the media is to blame? or do think people are not concerned? >> i disagree with you. i think because of the information revolution that people have access to so much more information. when you get outside of the big cities in america to the places where president obama it thinks people cling to guns and got because they're better -- in those places -- [laughter] you said it. you find across the country people who want to be informed can be.
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the kind of information available on foreign-policy, national security, economics -- it is incredible to me how much better-informed i think that people are, generally speaking, about issues that used to be seen as arbitrary and only experts cared about them. you get questions about them all over the place now. i share the view that there it is clearly a factor in terms of the cable television -- definitely. it helped to encourage people to say really radical things. and to give those people lots of attention. but at the same time, you should not think it is all lost. there is the flip side. now you don't need a long attention span to get an article online and spend a few minutes reading of. many americans are now.
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it feeds into the tea party movement, frankly. >> this is an issue i care much about. i do not really agree with liz. i do think there is more access to more information. sometimes it is quicker to go online and read what you care about. the downside is, there is no question people are moving more quickly through things, not reading to the end of the article. the president of cnn to me the other the crawl across the bottom of the screen because it kept people on their television programming for an additional 40 seconds. that was enough for them to add that. it was worth it to them. we see that repeatedly. you invented 3000 text messages per month. maybe we should turn the question back to you. the downside is people don't spend as much time thinking through complex issues.
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for decision-makers our expectations have changed. we want instant responses. we'll give time and space to be thoughtful. when the cuban missile crisis happened john kennedy had three days before it became public. then he had several warnings before he had to decide. now president obama would be expected to respond within minutes, if not hours. there would be news helicopters flying over side giving us live pictures. then there would be liz on tv debating about the midterm. there are real consequences. i worry a lot. we have lived through times of tremendous turmoil. the beginning of the last century when there were 23 daily newspapers in new york, all with
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different political point of view -- that was chaotic, and we came out of it into a time of stability. i'm confident that we will arrive at a time of relative stability go but in the meantime, there are consequences. >> don't you think the fact that people are looking at cnn less, maybe to the president of cnn means there less informed, but i don't believe so. >> no, -- >> but they are moving to so many places now. i am very optimistic. i do think we're moving through a revolution, but it has given people tremendous freedom to get access to information they may not have had before >> > i agree, but we also need to think for the cost of that in terms of things like decision-makers have in the space to be thoughtful and to reflect. we lose time to reflect. he should not give up easily.
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in international business and finance. you said one of the key reasons of determining that president obama's presidency was a failure is due to public opinion. i will make a logical step that between 2002 until 2006 was not good -- that was republican control. if you return to power, will will be different? you mentioned a few issues including repealing healthcare. i did not see much else on the table during those debates. what will be different? whinnied viable steps. you want us to allow republicans, but they are giving as much beside the "no." >> the new not looking in the right place, or very deep. clearly, every election, in which you have the repudiation of the party in power -- clearly
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2006 was that, so was to the summit. i think we will see that this time around. i think it is different this time because in the previous year's you had exhaustion among voters. but you did not have the sense that you have this time of a president who is truly working hard to put transformational change in place. that is the right of any president, but he can only do it as long as the american people support it. if you look at what republicans are saying, it is that we believe you cannot raise taxes and expect this economy to grow. we believe that $1 trillion stimulus plan which resulted in 3 million lost jobs -- and the president said we would do show already projects -- and there are not any -- the plan is not when you see people around the country running on.
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instead we are facing 10% unemployment. republicans want to put in place of private sector projects to give the private sector confidence. that the no we will not see massive regulation. that we understand a private sector must be the engine of growth. -- that we know that we will not seek massive re regulation. people in connecticut who are facing massive increases in premiums could shop around state-by-state to buy insurance from a company based in colorado. i ought to have the right to make those choices as a consumer. with republicans in congress, he would see less than one get to the white house, but it will be a clear agenda of limited government, lower taxes. of spending cuts. we don't want to see spending as
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in the stimulus them. it is a fundamental difference. as a young person -- i know that not talking point, and i'm picking on you -- but this election matters a lot. it is important for you to decide. it is legitimate to decide that you like president obama as a version of america. many americans do. but you ought to be clear that there's a big difference between that vision and that of republicans. it is important to dig into an look at. it is a big choice. >> i agree. your question is the right one. what will be different? [applause] the republicans had control of both houses and the white house and spending one at every single year. the national debt nearly doubled. we have not seen a single, specific spending cut.
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extending the bush cuts while many economists think we ought not to raise taxes and a recession will cost $3 trillion if we just do it for those making less than $250,000, and $4 trillion if we extended to the rich. in venice, the white house has not said how they will pay for extending tax cuts for the middle-class -- in fairness we have not seen them say that. we have heard no specific proposals from republicans. the president has a commission to cut spending on entitlements. but republicans say we will wait to see the recommendation of of the president's panel. are you kidding me?
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don't run on it if you have no specific ideas. you're waiting for the socialist president to suggest spending cuts? >> what dee dee said points out an apparent difference between the agendas. the republicans believe that the money you earn, the taxes, are your money, not the government's money. [applause] so when she talks about -- and the white house says this too -- you've watched austin nichols be on a beautiful white board took about how tax cuts will cost the government money -- you can watch austan goolsbee explained. if the issue is whether you will leave money with people because they know how to spend a better, but if you believe as economists mostly do that is not the time to raise taxes -- that is what
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the republicans believe. you may agree with democrats, but the issue of the cost of tax cuts is a big difference. >> [unintelligible] >> the think the money you earn, the taxes, belongs to the government? >> i think it belongs to me. but we need to be fiscally responsible, and need to acknowledge that those need to be offset with additional spending cuts -- so where will you cut? >> reduce the size of health care. >> according to the congressional budget office, health care will reduce the size of debt by $100 million over the next 10 years. if your palate, that is another amount the news to be found. that is a fact.
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>> what we have seen in terms of debt is this president has added $3 trillion. >> it is still less than what the bush-cheney administration added. [applause] >> barack obama has added $3 trillion in 20 months. bush added $3 trillion in eight years. [unintelligible] if you believe the government's role of to be limited -- >> go back to the bush years when the size of government grew and the deficit doubled. >> i am a senior economics and politics double major here. the question is for ms. myers, i
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do good but respond. could you talk a little about the bubble and the differences are similarities with the housing bubble? [laughter] more importantly, i was wondering to what extent you thought people were falsely blaming the obama administration for a seemingly and effective stimulus when the problem might be with the monetary aspect of the nation and the federal reserve keeping interest rates too long for too long? >> i had a chance to chat with her at the reception before and was very impressed with her grasp of monetary policy. i don't really have any substantive answers concerning the bubble and the housing bubble similar is.
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but we could talk for a long time about the housing bubble and its ramifications. liz will probably blame fannie mae and freddie mac, and i will probably blame more some banks who are securitized mortgages, chopping them up, and the ratings agencies to were selling their ratings --there's plenty of blame to go around. as for the fed keeping interest rates low, that is something that has been used over time to stimulate the economy when there is joblessness. it has usually been affected. but the interest rates are nearly zero and we are not create jobs. the fed is trying other things. they are buying back some mortgages. they are trying qeii. ben bernanke seems like a
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competent guy to me. he was first appointed by president bush, reappointed by president obama. >> two years from now think things will be better. isi don't think the problem monetary policy. if you have to sum up the problem -- is debt. one of the reasons david cameron has been forced to do what he has is the united kingdom does not have access to the creditors that we do. but you must be really concerned that when you get to a point when their creditors think these people are not getting their house in order, and entitlements are living, that we will begin to face similar problems. >> ok, professor from the history department. >> the tax question was raised, so i want to go to the next
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level and talk about redistribution of wealth. it gets half the people in this audience upset. the people in bridgeport, hartford, new haven, and the poor cities are worried about it. or give people tend to be upset because they have seen their income decreased, not only the last 10 years, but over the past 30 years while the rich are only getting richer. if we went back to the 1950's tax system were the highest level has a 90% tax rate, that seems to me a responsible return for the people who are benefiting from this society and making money. i don't think obama is doing enough to really educate on these kinds of issues about social responsibility in terms of who pays and who gets what. what would you do with this growing gap between the rich and poor?
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>> as such and they think liz would be thrilled if the president came out with a 90% top marginal tax rate. i believe and a progressive tax system but it is true and that eisenhower years that the top marginal rate was 90%. we look back to that as the golden era of the american middle-class. it was a time when everyone had a chance to make it and the gap between people at the top and people who worked for them was not 100 times the income. i do not advocate glenn beck to 90% marginal tax rate. an adverse has enoug affect. i don't think the american people would support it. but since the tax cuts in the 1980's we have seen a tremendous growth in the gap between rich and poor. i think that we should be
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concerned. president clinton was very concerned. he tried to do something about it and raised at the top marginal tax it. we created 22 million jobs by the. i don't think that increases in the top tax rate are zero job- busting economy as republicans claim. it made sense. if we went back to the clinton tax rates, i don't think the economy would go in the tank. if you look at who benefited from the bush tax cuts -- the people of the top pay the most, but also benefit the most from the market-driven economy. it makes sense to go back to the clinton era tax rates. there was very low growth rate drop the bush era in spite of the big tax cuts. there was very slow job growth, 6 million jobs in eight years -- very low. >> when you look at the $250,000
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figure that the white house seems to be focused on, what you must realize is that 40% of the taxpayers at $250,000 are small businesses. when you increase the taxes on them you're not just taking money, but taking jobs. you are taking money away that will not be invested. history is clear that you cannot go to a situation where you have a 90% rate and expect any growth in the economy. history has taught us that countries and economies willing to give it the private sector the room it needs to create jobs are those that will grow and thrive. we have a set of policies -- one it inhibits the growth, the country will not grow. i would question her numbers about job growth and the bush administration.
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there is a big difference between where we are today in from the clinton tax cuts. to say they have little impact will we raise the marginal rate i don't think it is possible to compare with the situation we are in today. >> we're not only out of money, but we over time. first of all, thank you it to those waiting -- we want to make sure that you know november 8 will be one of the brightest young men in america -- the lecture will be cohen who has just left the state department and become the director of the google ideas. join us for that. let's have a handful of dissidents who did an amazing job. thank you.
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before you leave, please -- president franklin roosevelt said that democracy cannot succeed unless those who expressed their choice are prepared to choose wisely. the real safeguard of democracy there for is in education. tonight we had two of the most articulate and informative spokesperson's giving us their views of the upcoming election. we're deeply indebted to our guests, licit cheney and the myers -- liz cheney and dee dee myers. . from fairfield university and to go to c-span.
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♪ >> at 1:00 p.m. eastern will have live coverage concerning women's rights. ali is the resident scholar at the national enterprise is to two. she will talk about her memoir today. and our live programming will continue later with a panel discussion on social media and the 2010 collection. that will get under way at 6:30 p.m. eastern. some political news from
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politico -- independent voters are ready to cast ballots for republicans this cycle according to an analysis of poll numbers. during the week of labor day 29% of independents said they backed or leaned towards republican candidates for congress. it rose to 38% three weeks later and is now 44%. you can read more about that poll at the midterm elections are only eight days away. each night we're showing the base from key races around the country. here's a look at the lineup for tonight. we will begin at 8:00 p.m. and have live coverage of the kentucky senate debate with rand pauland jack conway, to be followed by the minnesota governor race, and a pair of house races in colorado and in new york.
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>> this week on "the communicators" -- mclaughlin on the role of private and public security in cyber secured. his company's role in establishing and to name -- internet names. >> remarks from senate minority leader mitch mcconnell @ rally for the republican candidate on friday. other speakers include other republicans. from charleston, west virginia, this is just over one hour. >> the sydney we are pleased to
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have with those mitch mcconnell from our neighboring state ky. kentucky's shares many of the same concerns, things like cap and trade, keeping the call in the ground, not letting its out --both kentucky and west virginia share the concern about the guy lives in the white house today. we have a lot of work to do. but i'm so glad that here with us this evening is senator mitch mcconnell. give him a rousing welcome from west virginia and say thank you for his service and for his service to come. [applause] >> thank-you very much, mike.
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it is wonderful to be over here in a neighboring state. can did from ay candid political point of view, i have not looked over the border with much optimism for a long time. but we since there might be something changing in the mountain state. in 2000 when you put it west virginia and the win column for george bush, how do not, al gore would have been president. on the same day, shelley came to washington and has done a fabulous job representing you. [applause] thanks for all you've done over the last 10 years. the only thing better than one congressman would be three republican congressmen from west virginia.
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this is the year to do it. let me briefly take you back to november 2008. even though kentucky and west virginia were not supportive of the president, the cold, hard reality was on the day the president was sworn in he was sitting on a 65% or 70% approval rating, had a 486-vote majority on his way to getting the magic number in the senate. his chief of staff famously said, a crisis is a terrible thing to waste. what we have seen the last two years was every left-wing idea that had been stacking up over the past 20 years that could not get through it because there was a republican congress or republican white house, that they have been jamming down our
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throats. we have seen in running banks, insurance companies, nationalizing the student loan business, taking over health care, passing a really bad financial services bill that every community banker in the kentucky and west virginia opposed, and ironically, some of the big boys from wall street showed up at the signing ceremony. the passed a budget that will double the national debt in five years. they are turned to turn this into a western european country as rapidly as they can. we did not know for sure two years ago of the american people would feel about all this. it was not clear. as the leader of a diminished band of 40 in the senate, one vote short of where you need to be to be relevant in the
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process --we decided to have a great national debate about the future of the country. we decided none of this warranted bipartisan support. the american people needed to have a sense that there was a genuine disagreement. along the way, the american people began to get energized and activated. we have with us at the table match from freedom works -- you have been extremely important. [applause] sort of a spontaneous uprising, if you will, of concern the american citizens. i am frequently on the sunday talk shows.
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on the last one the host was talking about all these extremists in america. i looked at her politely. i said what most americans think is extreme is what this administration and congress have been doing for the last two years. [applause] and cap and trade in particular. goes right to the heart of the economies of kentucky and west virginia. talk about a threat. you don't need to send to washington anybody you are not totally confident is going to oppose cap and trade. it is the worst thing that could possibly happen to west virginia. [applause] now in the wake of all of this it has been interesting to watch
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the other side. back when they managed to jim health care threw with no vote to spare in the senate on christmas eve, every republican opposing it. the worst piece of legislation passed in my time in the senate -- the worst. cap and trade would be the second worst. [unintelligible] so, they have this dilemma. their consultants are telling them that you cannot run on anything you have done. people do not like this in this bill. they realize it only provided a stimulus for public employees, and not for the private sector. you cannot run on health care bill.
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you cannot run on the financial services bill. you cannot run on cap and trade. what are you going to do? they tried for about a week to demonize and john boehner. then they dropped that. did they try to demonize and john boehner. they tried to run against george bush again. and discovered there is a statute of limitations. that was not going to work. then they tried foreign money. remember that? then just today, over the last couple of days, they are trying another argument. >> senator harry reid said


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